All work and no play makes Jack and dull boy.

Month: September 2011

9/11

This tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the US on 9/11 fills everyone who witnessed them with a sense of grim remembrance, from constant replays on television news and accounts of individual memories of the events on that day.
I can remember very clearly where I was. It was the first day of the new term at Bramley Sunnyside Junior School, which had started late because of delayed building work at the school over the summer. The day was given over to prepping the classrooms and buildings before pupils came back on the 12th and I had gone out to “Milnes” hardware shop in Maltby to buy some baskets for desks. I can recall quite distinctly looking through the baskets while another customer was telling one of the shop assistants what had happened in New York.
Having been to New York, having been to the top of the south tower in 1995, I had a particular fondness for the place. Sleek, minimalist design but somehow projecting an enormous (and somewhat Freudian) sense of power and wealth and might. So to watch it destroyed by hijacked planes, tumbling to dust in 10 seconds, brought an emotional response as one who had lived and worked in New York, among New Yorkers. Tracey and I had stood at the bottom of the north tower when we visited New Yok in October 1998.
There is so much horror in that day – the hijackings, the crashes, the destruction of the WTC and part of the Pentagon, the bravery of those on Flight 93 and their deaths, the jumpers from the towers – it’s hard even now to take it in.
Today is a day for remembrance, remembering who were lost on 9/11 – and in the wars since – and remembering a slightly more innocent time.
Let’s hold on to the hope that sometime in the future we can find that innocence once again.

Autumn wanderings.

Some Riot

Finished shooting Joshua Glenn’s short film “Some Riot” two weeks ago now and the first cut of this is down. It needs some work – some pick-ups and refinement but it’s coming along nicely. We’re hoping to have it finished by the end of September but in the meantime have a look at the promo poster I’ve just done for the film. Joshua is rather please with it, as am I.

It’s just a case of thinking about a strategy for festivals once the film is completed. Which leads me to…

A Sense of Disappointment

Really disappointed that Georgia’s Angel was turned down for both Encounters at Bristol and Raindance this last week; and Land of Dreams was similarly turned down for Encounters.
In fact, a little bit annoyed to be quite honest.
But reflecting on this I came to the conclusion that, really, despite all of the planning for both films, what was never taken into consideration was a promotional plan. It has just been the case that I’ve submitted the films to whichever festivals popped up in the sidebar on WithOutABox. And here is the lesson, one I often repeat at the start of the film-making cycle and one I have now officially been burned by at the end.
PLAN.
Then PLAN A BIT MORE.
Then PLAN A LITTLE BIT MORE THAN THAT.
I have failed to make sure these films were targeted at the right places. Take Georgia’s Angel, for example. Our test audience feedback from the UK was largely successful. However, the Canadian audience were a bit more challenging, in large part because of the nature of the film and – believe it or not – the accents of the cast.
Yes, you read that correctly.
Of course, this is not something I should’ve ignored. The film appeals more to a local (i.e. UK) audience an maybe it should’ve been submitted to small festivals there first to build up a head of steam.
But what is the problem with Land of Dreams? Feedback has been universally positive for that. I think the issue here has been the lack of planning and preparation. The WOAB profile is not particularly detailed and there is nothing in the way of a plan of direction for the film at festivals.
So… that’s this week job then!

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